Preston 馃悵 Vander Ven

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Do I Need A College Degree?


I am writing this article as my answer to what I read and saw in an buzz by Brian Wallace聽called聽

Can You be Successful Without a College Degree?聽聽

To first answer this question, I feel a person needs to ask themselves "HOW do they want to be successful?" If a person's definition of success is a career path, such as a doctor, lawyer, or perhaps a computer engineer than YES, a degree might be required.聽聽

But, I feel their are two other paths most people choose. The first is a path where one's goal is to help and influence people in their lives. Here the answer is NO, we do not need a degree to accomplish this. This is done through strength in our character. The vehicle we choose to use might need a degree, but I feel that is different.

Lastly, I feel the most popular reason people go to college is they believe it will help them make more money in the long run and they see it is a stamp of approval in the "real world". Society usually views a degree as success. This degree in some way separates them from the pack and will even guarantee financial success. But, the path to financial freedom is found through financial - NOT traditional - education.聽

The majority of my associates who I know that have degrees do not even use them. Many of them found their positions through the power of association. The wealthiest associates in my personal circles do not even have degrees. They created their wealth as entrepreneurs or through investments.聽聽

The truth many people aren't willing to admit is you don't need a college degree to be successful. But you do need an education, along with a desire to continue to learn, work hard, and adapt.聽I, myself, learned more during my first few years out of college than all my college years together. I associated, and begin to listen to others who reached their goals in both their careers and financial life. I wanted to see the difference between their teaching and the world's.

The author who had the biggest impact on me after college was best selling author, Robert Kiyosaki. He taught me 5 things I could do besides going to college:

1.聽 Work to learn

2.聽 Explore non-traditional education

3.聽 Begin investing

4.聽 Start a business

5.聽 Serve your community

Simply having a college degree doesn鈥檛 guarantee a job, nor should it. Employees need to bring marketable skills to the table, as well as the ability to continue learning, growing, and providing value for their employer. I am not saying people who choose low-paying degrees aren鈥檛 successful 鈥 far from it. Many people choose degrees based on what makes them happy, and it is easy to admire someone who chooses happiness over wealth.

But, sadly, I feel colleges' goals are now only to sell degrees. There is little care for the student or a goal to produce citizens with skills to help and grow the economy. This is why there are so many bizarre types of degrees today. Students with some of these degrees are only qualified to teach others who want the same degree. Their other choice is to work a job that doesn't require a degree while paying off their "ball and chain" of student debt.

When the government started to give out student loans, college slowly started to become one of the biggest scams of all time. The government gives the loans to the students, the students pay the colleges, the colleges keep increasing the prices, and the government keeps giving out the loans while the quality of education decreases. These loans can never be gotten rid of, until paid off. One day I feel this "Student Loan" bubble will pop.聽

I will end with the most important topic reason why I believe colleges and universities are not worth our youths goals or time anymore. Today, most colleges indoctrinate rather than educate. Yet, this is another topic all in it own.

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